WNMS Working at Monkman this Summer

Looking to do something a bit different this year? How about spending a couple weeks working on trails in Monkman Park?

Rob Bressette from BC Parks met with a group of Wolverine Nordic and Mountain Club members on Wednesday, April 21 to discuss improvements to the trails in Monkman Park.

Monkman will be the focus of the WNMS?s trailbuilding activities this summer. ?I see this as your project,? said Bressette to the crowd of nearly thirty people who gathered in the library to discuss the project. He says his role will be to support the local project.

There are three foci to this project, says Bressette. The first is improving the trail to Monkman Lake. While the first half of the 24 km trail are in very good shape, there are parts of it between km 12 and km 20 that are in desperate need of repair. The trail needs to be brushed out, windfall needs to be cleared, and some bridges need to be decked.

Secondly, a trail needs to be created down to the Cascades on Monkman Creek. These falls are one of the hidden treasures of Monkman Park. While it is currently possible to get to the falls along a rough game trail, many people have reported that they were unable to find these lovely falls. The new trail would be signed and marked and easy to follow.

The final aspect of the project is doing trail maintenance on the trails around Kinuseo Falls, most notably the Stone Corral Trail. While the trail is in fairly good condition, it has been a few years since anyone has done any work on it.

There were 29 people at the meeting, of which 15 expressed interest in volunteering to work on the trail. Larry White and Kevin Sharmin will be reconnoitering the trail, and figuring out the best route to the Cascades. They plan to hike the trail in May and June, with trailbuilding currently scheduled for the middle of July.

?This is something new for the club,? says Charles Helm. ?We?ve never done worked on a trail that required us to overnight.?

Because of government cutbacks, BC Parks does not have the resources to do the trail improvements themselves. Bressette has managed to scrape together about $5000 for the project, which will go towards buying tools and materials, as well as food for volunteers on the trail.

Part of the money will also go towards training people to the proper standards for building trails in the park. Each crew working on the trail, says Bressette, will need to have someone with First Aid training, at least to OFA level 1. As well, anyone using a chainsaw will have to pass a Chairsaw Certification Course. Both of these courses will be held in the next few months.

Interested in volunteering? Contact Charles Helm by email at drchelm@pris.bc.ca, or call 242-3984.